The first reviews of Microsoft’s (MSFT) Windows 7 are coming in, and for Windows fans hoping Microsoft would fix the problems that have plagued the unpopular Vista, it doesn’t look good. InfoWorld’s Randall Kennedy analyses the next Windows (an early release) and skewers the product.
Windows 7 is “lipstick on a pig,” he charges, the same old slow Vista with a cosmetic makeover:
Windows 7 is in fact just a repackaging of Windows Vista… Key processes look and work much like they do under Vista, and preliminary benchmark testing shows that Windows 7 performs right on a par with its predecessor. Frankly, Windows 7 is Vista, at least under the hood; if nothing else, this should translate into excellent backward compatibility with Vista-certified applications and drivers.
Except that it might not. The M3 build of Windows 7 breaks all sorts of things that, frankly, it shouldn’t be breaking.
Ouch. But we’d like to offer a few points in Microsoft’s defence: Windows 7 remains in pre-beta, with a late 2009 release (and rumours circulate the product may get delayed to 2010). And not every Windows 7 pre-reviewer is as harsh: CNET’s Ina Fried offers somewhat tepid praise for the OS:
[Windows 7] does feel considerably faster than my work machine, but that’s a several-year-old IBM ThinkPad T42. And, as a colleague points out, a new Windows image often feels fast, until you load all of your usual add-ons and third-party software on top of it… the testament to Windows 7 is that I still want to use it
There’s a lot riding on this one for Microsoft — with consumers avoiding Vista, Apple (AAPL) is eating into Windows’ market share as king of operating systems.
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